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IJ union decertified

  1. Original Date Announced

    November 2, 2020

    On reconsideration of its prior decision, the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) decertifies the National Association of Immigration Judges (NAIJ). In its prior decision, the FLRA found that IJs do not create and influence policy, are therefore not management officials, and could unionize accordingly. On reconsideration, the FLRA concludes that it had "failed to recognize the significance of IJ decisions and how those decisions influence policy," ruling that IJs are management officials and therefore excluded from being part of a collective bargaining unit.

    [ID #213]

    DOJ v NAIJ, 71 FLRA 207 (2020)
  2. Effective Date

    November 2, 2020
  4. Biden Administration Action: Modified

    June 25, 2021


    This Biden administration policy modifies the Trump-era policy identified in this entry.

    On June 25, 2021, EOIR withdrew its opposition to NAIJ's motion for reconsideration before the FLRA. No. WA-RP-19-0067-REC.

    View Document
  5. Biden Administration Action: Approved/Retained

    December 7, 2021

    2021.12.07 Settlement Agreement Between the U.S. Department of Justice, Executive Office for Immigration Review and the National Association of Immigration Judges

    This Biden administration policy purports to revoke in its entirety the Trump-era policy identified in this entry.

    On December 7, 2021, EOIR and NAIJ signed a settlement agreement and thus the Biden administration appears to once again recognize NAIJ as IJs' union.

    View Document
  6. Biden Administration Action: Approved/Retained

    April 15, 2022

    Revocation of IJ Union Certification

    On April 15, 2022, the D.C. Regional Director of the Federal Labor Relations Authority issued an order decertifying the Immigration Judges' union, based on the Authority's previous findings that Immigration Judges are management officials.

    View Document

Current Status

Fully in Effect

Most Recent Action

April 15, 2022 Action: Approved/Retained Revocation of IJ Union Certification
June 25, 2021
Acted on by Biden Administration
December 7, 2021
Acted on by Biden Administration
April 15, 2022
Acted on by Other

Original Trump Policy Status

Status: In Litigation
Trump Administration Action: Change in Practice
Subject Matter: Hearings and Adjudications
Agencies Affected: EOIR

Pre Trump-Era Policies

  • September 1, 2000

    The Clinton administration previously tried to decertify the immigration judges’ union. The FLRA's 2000 ruling denied the administration's application for review to break up the union.

    Sept. 1, 2000 FLRA Order denying application for review
  • August 13, 2019

    In August 2019, the Trump Administration DOJ filed a petition to decertify NAIJ, arguing that the FLRA's 2000 decision was no longer applicable in light of "factual and legal developments" including increasing numbers of affirmances without opinions (AWOs) issued by the BIA, an increase in credible fear and reasonable fear adjudications, and the Supreme Court's holding in Lucia v. SEC, 138 S.Ct. 2044 (2018).

    FLRA Petition
  • July 31, 2020

    On July 31, 2020, the FLRA issued a decision rejecting EOIR’s petition to decertify the NAIJ: “IJs are not management officials within the meaning of section 7103(a)(11) of the Statute and EOIR’s petition is dismissed.”

    DOJ v NAIJ, 56 FLRA 97


  • Trump Administration Moves to Decertify Outspoken Immigration Judges’ Union

    Go to article
  • Eighty Members of Congress Call on DOJ to Withdraw Petition to Decertify NAIJ

    Go to article
  • Labor Authority Continues Effort to Bust Immigration Judges Union, Without Management Support

    Go to article on
  • FLRA Decision Busts Immigration Judges Union, Carrying Out Anti-Union Trump Administration Attack on Federal Employees and Immigration Court

    The International Federation of Technical & Professional Engineers (IFPTE) urges confirmation of the Biden Administration appointees to the FLRA in light of the D.C. Regional Director's issuance of an April 15, 2022 order decertifying the Immigration Judges' union. It notes that this was done in spite of AG Garland's withdrawal of the decertification petition.

    Go to article
  • IJ Union Pushes for Recertification

    On July 21, 2022, the National Association of Immigration Judges (NAIJ) submitted a petition with the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA), asking the FRLA to re-certify their union and recognize their collective bargaining rights.

    Go to article on


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